Pregnancy and Epilepsy


You can still get pregnant and become a parent if you have epilepsy.

If you become pregnant then you should speak to your epilepsy specialist as your seizures may happen more often or your epilepsy medicine may not be as effective.

If you are planning to get pregnant you can have preconception counselling.

You must keep taking your medicine while pregnant and ask your doctor for 5mg a day folic acid supplements.

If your seizures happen more often when you are pregnant then go to your epilepsy specialist and they will give you advice on how to manage the situation safely for you and your baby.

For fathers with epilepsy your AEDs will not be passed on to your baby at conception. For mothers, your AEDs may not work as well so speak to your doctor about getting the right dose for you.

Most seizure types will not affect your unborn baby unless you injure yourself. Only tonic-clonic seizures could possibly cause you to miscarry or cause harm to you or your baby.

Most women with epilepsy have normal deliveries and healthy babies.

In some rare cases (2–4 in every 100) the stress of labour may trigger a tonic-clonic seizure. You will be given drugs to control the seizure and to make sure your baby’s oxygen supply is not reduced. Ideally you will take your AEDs as normal during labour.

Some AEDs may not be suitable for use during pregnancy, please speak to your doctor if you are planning to get pregnant or become pregnant. Do not stop taking medication without consulting your doctor. Click here to find out more from the Epilepsy Society.